David Lockwin—The People's Idol eBook

John McGovern
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 151 pages of information about David LockwinThe People's Idol.

“I have come, my love.  What has happened?”

“Listen!” she commands, and reads by the portico light: 

Thursday Afternoon, Nov. 30.

ESTHER, MY WIFE AND WIDOW: 

It is absolutely necessary that you should come at once to the drug store formerly kept by Dr. Floddin, at 803 State street.

Bring an escort.

This step must be taken in your own interest—­certainly not in the interest of your husband.

DAVID LOCKWIN.

“Come!” she says, taking her lover by the hand as a teacher might take a child.

But George Harpwood is not at his wits’ end.

“Get into my carriage, Esther,” he suggests softly.

“No,” she says sternly.  “We will walk thither.”

The pair go round the corner into a mist made azure by a vast building which is lighted at every window to the seventh story.  It rises three blocks away like a storm-cloud over the lake.

It is the David Lockwin Annex.  The bride hurries faster than the bridegroom would have her walk.  He seizes her arm.

“My dear,” he whispers in those accents which seem to have lost their magic power, “it is merely a claimant.  I was expecting it, and I’ll put him in the penitentiary for it.  Do not be alarmed by forgers.  It is only a forgery.”

CHAPTER V

AT SIX O’CLOCK

Through the mist and the smoke a red and a green light shine out on State street.

The door of the little store is locked.  The bride’s hand has rattled the latch.

A silver star can be seen in the store.  It is an officer in charge of the premises.  He hurries to the door.

“Are you Mrs. Lockwin?”

“I am.  Let him in, too.”  The officer has willed to exclude the bridegroom.

“Hadn’t he better wait outside?”

“Let him in!”

“Here is a packet addressed to you.”  The officer hands to the bride a thick letter.  “Take this chair, madam.”

The bride sits down, her back toward the lights in the window.  The bridegroom stands close behind her.

“Be firm, Esther.  I’ll put him in the penitentiary.  I’ll put him in the penitentiary!”

The bride opens the packet.  Many folded documents fall to her lap.  She is quick to spread out the chief letter.

The bridegroom pulls the silk handkerchief off his white shirt-front and wipes his perspiring forehead again and again.  He leans over her shoulder to read.  The writing is large and distinct: 

Thursday Afternoon, Nov. 30.

MY DEARLY BELOVED WIFE AND WIDOW: 

It may be barely possible that I have lived these years of shame and degradation to some good purpose, and for the following reasons:  The man whom you now love so well—­the man whom you are about to marry—­George Harpwood—­is an adventurer and a criminal.

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Project Gutenberg
David Lockwin—The People's Idol from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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